6. A better spine implant for lower back pain?Mayo Clinic earlier this year licensed facet replacement technology to KICVentures for further development and commercialization. The technology, the brainchild of neurosurgeon Dr. Mohamad Bydon, is meant to be implanted posteriorly through a simple procedure. It mimics the natural human motion of the spine so that it doesn’t cause further spinal degeneration — a potential problem with spinal fusion surgery.
Mayo Clinic went through numerous designs and prototypes of the device, eventually testing it on cadavers. “We have about $600,000 or $700,000 worth of labor into this, so that’s actually not too much for this kind of an application,” Wehde said. “Companies have invested millions in trying to solve this exact problem, which is why it was so readily licensed.”